Absa, in their continued bid to remain at the top of Africa’s financial services sector, has extended its operations beyond the shores of South Africa by procuring payments infrastructure with the aid of HPS, a Morocco-based payment solutions provider
Absa and HPS announced that PowerCARD has replaced the legacy merchant acquiring settlement platform used by Absa’s Regional Operations (ARO). The switch to the new system was concluded sometime in March but was only recently made known to the public.
According to the HPS website, PowerCARD makes it possible for Absa to accept transactions from “any channel”, initiated “by any means-of-payment.”
PowerCARD took the place of Absa’s legacy systems last year when HPS introduced the payment infrastructure in African countries where Absa has a presence, namely Uganda, Zambia, Kenya, Tanzania, Seychelles, Ghana, and Botswana.
Vanessa Olver, Absa’s chief enablement officer, states that the new system, which combines its switch and settlement proficiencies, has “improve[d] stability”, reduced the financial group’s “cost to serve”, and enables every country to control their operations through role-based access to the program.
According to Vimal Kumar, Absa’s regional operation chief executive for retail and business bank. “The payment landscape in Africa poses a huge potential”
“Through electronic payments, we aim to bring financial services to many more unbanked and underbanked people, reduce transaction costs and increase customer convenience. This is a significant investment committed as part of our journey to transform the payment capability of the firm”
Barclays owns a 15% stake in Absa, resulting from its acquisition of the financial services group in 2005. However, Absa has started a process of divestment from the UK bank.